Richard Duarte Brown, a longtime Columbus artist and art educator, has been selected for the 2022 Aminah Brenda Lynn Robinson Fellowship, a program created by the Greater Columbus Arts Council and the Columbus Museum of Art.
The fellowship continues from Jan. 3 to April 3, and includes a $15,000 grant, community outreach activities and access to the in-home East Columbus studio of the late Aminah Robinson. The fellowship, along with an artist residency at the home, is one of two programs designed to support African American professional visual artists and honor Robinson, the beloved Columbus artist who died in 2015. Through thousands of multi-media works, Robinson told stories of her family and the struggles and achievements of African Americans.
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“I am extremely honored,” Brown said. “I visited Aminah and (her son) Sydney in that house in the 1990s … I never expected to be in collaboration with her legacy. Like every other creative gatekeeper, I am inspired to gather the diasporic survival stories. We must not disconnect from our roots; it’s the death of our culture and community.”
Brown, 64, who works primarily in mixed media, has shown his works in a variety of exhibitions, including at the Vanderelli Room, Richard M. Ross Art Museum, the Ohio History Center and the McConnell Arts Center. He has participated in teaching programs through the Ohio Arts Council, the Columbus Museum of Art and Center for Arts-Inspired Learning in Cleveland.
Currently, he is working with young artists in the Whitehall Schools, among other places. He said he is especially committed to working with and encouraging the next generation of African American artists.
Making art, Brown said, “is not just making art. It’s finding answers. It’s part of your worship and your ‘worth-ship.’”
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Brown’s work, said Marshall Shorts, fellowship juror and founder of Artfluential, “embodies a deep resolve for community, art and storytelling … Very much like Aminah, (he) demonstrates how visual culture can provide windows in the lives of real people.”
The other jurors for the fellowship award were Jackie Calderone, founding director of TRANSIT ARTS; Deidre Hamlar, director of the Aminah Robinson Legacy Project at the Columbus Museum of Art; Wendy Kendrick, the 2021 recipient of the fellowship; and Douglas MacDonald, president of the Shepard Community Association.
In January, the winner of the Aminah Robinson artist residency fellowship will be announced. Both fellowships received financial support from Loann Crane, the arts benefactor who died in November.
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